Book Reviews
by Danielle Dalman

The Beginning of Everything by Robyn Schneider

This book starts off as a tragic story about a boy who fell from grace because of a car accident. Although he was the most popular boy in school, his friends ditch him and suddenly he becomes someone everyone talks about. Cassidy Thorpe is another story. You don’t quite trust her throughout the book, and you always wonder when the other shoe is going to drop. She’s an enigmatic character full of spirit and knowledge, with a hint of mystery. The book does an excellent job of bringing these two completely different people together and making it work. The side characters are also loveable and you can’t help but root for them. The writing is witty and uses a voice that is strong, believable, and relatable. The narration is full of puns and bad jokes that will make you laugh out loud, and each page is filled with pop-culture references. The ending is poignant and heartbreaking, at once both full of hope and full of tragedy. By the final page, you’ll simultaneously be wiping away tears and smiling, knowing that everything happens for a reason and that maybe a tragedy is just the beginning of everything wonderful that can happen in life. It was an encounter with fate.

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Love and Other Foreign Words by Erin McCahan

The author perfectly describes how most people spend their life; speaking languages to different types of people as they fit. Josie, a 15-year old genius girl tells a story about how she adjusts to different languages spoken to her, the language of adults, teenagers and old people. In her vocabulary, love doesn’t exist and admits that it is a language she doesn’t understand. So when her sister decided to marry a guy she doesn’t approve of, she struggles to understand the situation. When she and Stu suddenly get a new instructor and instantly get smitten, she finally thought if that’s what love supposes to feel like. Josie gets exhausted as she constantly shifts to different languages people speak. Her delightful and witty parents try to help, but eventually it takes radical actions by both Kate and Stu to give Josie insight into the language of her. This book was a cute and fast read and a good pastime.

Words and their Meanings by Kate Basset

This book deals with death and how it affects life. Anna struggles live and wakes up every day. To relieve herself from all the sorrows, she plays dead and does yoga that makes her parents worry about her. She hasn’t moved on from the death of his uncle that she loved so much. So when her friend dragged her for a part time job and meet Patrick, her life changed and bit by bit she saw light. But as she tries to surround herself with Joe again, she found something she shouldn’t have. As Anna goes too deep into the sticky situation she is forced to let go of this romanticized image she had of her bruncle. She hit a new path of confusion like how she is supposed to hold onto someone she loved so dearly when it turns out she didn’t really know him in the first place? Soon after her anger washed over because of her new discoveries she decides to accept the bruncle she loved as a human who makes mistakes and deserves to be forgiven and now all that is left is to forgive her. Going down a road of mystery can unravel family secrets that might have been better left folded away in an origami crane. This is an inspirational story about healing, caring, forgiving, letting go, and understanding that the past no matter how rough is a foundational stepping stone for bigger things in life rather than a haltering stop. “One memory is never the whole story. We are all made of secrets and contradictions, stardust, and possibilities.”